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Oven Fries

(recipe, Caroline Cummins)

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This recipe is adapted from the January/February 2004 issue of Cook's Illustrated. Try to cut the fries into widths of about ½ inch; any thinner and they'll cook up dry and hard, any thicker and they'll cook up moist and mushy.


  1. 3 large russet (baking) potatoes, about 8 ounces each, scrubbed clean (peeling is optional) and sliced lengthwise into about 12 evenly sized steak fries
  2. 4 Tbsp. canola or peanut oil
  3. 1 tsp. salt
  4. 1 tsp. pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Place the sliced potatoes in a large bowl and cover with hot tap water; soak 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry with dishcloths or paper towels.
  3. Rinse and wipe out the large bowl; return the potatoes to the bowl and toss with the oil, salt, and pepper. Arrange the potato slices in single layers on two heavy rimmed baking sheets.
  4. Bake for about 12 to 15 minutes; check that the bottoms of the potato slices are browning, and flip them with a spatula once the bottoms are nicely browned. Rotate the baking sheets so the potatoes will cook evenly. Bake for another 12 to 15 minutes, or until the tops are browned and the potatoes are crispy on the outside, flaky on the inside.
  5. Transfer the oven fries to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Season with freshly chopped parsley and additional salt and pepper, if desired, and serve at once.